Fitz Fired

ESPN is now reporting that Fitzgerald has been fired.

Fitz fired. I wonder if Shapiro or Phillips were still there if this would have had the same result


I’m hearing that Braun will be the interim coach


Quite possibly, though they might not have gone the two-week suspension route first.

Mike Nolan

Braun’s been at NU for only a few months, so he may be considered more ‘untainted’ by this. The other assistant coaches may be on the chopping block by the end of the 2023 season, as I’m sure a new head coach is going to be expected to clean house.

Whatever your predictions were for NU’s 2023 record, they probably just went out the window.

BTW, firing the coach opens up the transfer portal for the players on the roster, will they jump ship en masse?

Mike Nolan

It sure looks bad for Schill to change his mind over a few days and go from 2 weeks to total firing Not sure what kind of leader that suggests ; unless he thought he should consult with the Board and was told he better fire Fitz ( Though he said it was his decision and his alone)

I’m not sure how many of you have seen this.


Northwestern fires head coach Pat Fitzgerald



This issue will almost certainly be the main thing Michael Schill’s time at Northwestern is remembered for, regardless of how long he stays or what else he does. Whether it will shorten his Presidency is a separate issue. It depends on whether it impacts the confidence of the board or key members of it.

What impact will this have on the plans to tear down and rebuild the football stadium? Stay tuned.

Mike Nolan

I think the new stadium is on the sidelines for now

First it was having difficulty anyhow

Second, I would think Pat Ryan won’t be writing checks for several hundred million anytime soon He was a big Fitz fan and can’t be too happy about todays decision

The program has a big question mark attached to it and thus one would think that is not the time to spend high 9 figures on such an undertaking


IMHO, this has been handled atrociously by NU’s administration.

My Kellogg crisis management class professor, who was in senior management at Hill and Knowlton, told us time after time after time that the first principle of crisis management is to “tell the truth, and tell it fast.” Get out in front of the story. The way media has changed in the 40 years since makes an even more compelling argument for following that rule. As someone else said earlier today, Schill’s initial press release and subsequent reversal will provide the basis for an excellent case study.

Also, after the information that surfaced today regarding the baseball program, I do not understand why Gragg still has a job, let alone that he is tasked with hiring Fitz’ successor.


From Paul Sullivan’s latest Trib column:

Now that Fitzgerald is gone, maybe it’s time to look into whether Schill is the right guy to lead the university forward after a scandal that will have long-term ramifications. Does anyone trust him to make the right call on a replacement?

Pretty much my feelings.


And didn’t Gragg hire the current baseball coach? Seems like that one could have been vetted a bit more.

I’m not defending Schill. Based upon what I know so far, I would not have fired Fitz

However ,If Sullivan wants to fire him for bumbling the whole affair with the 2 week suspension going to permanent in the span of 72 hours; then fine. But the “scandal” did not occur on his watch. He took over as President in September, Kenosha events are preseason and thus pre date him at NU

By naming Braun as the replacement; the newest kid on the block, NU probably felt they didn’t want anyone who had been around previously who could be held accountable to the hazing Hence Braun himself is not tainted



I thought Pat Ryan had already written the big check.

I thought Pat was a “pledge and match” and only a down payment was actually transferred to the university.

Schill was not NUs first choice, Rebecca Blank, sadly passed from illness. Does he have the confidence of the Board, administration and staff? I would want him out he was running my company.

Oh well, back to 3 or 4 years in the doldrums…



I knew Rebecca Blank was ill, but not that she passed away in such a short time. What a sad thing.


The account of how the team and staff learned of the firing doesn’t inspire much confidence. Pat showed way more class than Schill in meeting with the team and staff in person.